UK court rules Foreign Office must release evidence to Guantanamo detainee

[JURIST] London's High Court on Thursday ruled [PDF, judgment] that the UK Foreign Office must turn over evidence [Independent report] "essential" to the defense of Binyam Mohamed [Reprieve profile], the last British resident still detained at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive]. Lawyers representing Mohamed at his US military commission trial had appeared [JURIST report] before the High Court in July, arguing that the Foreign Office possessed evidence showing that Mohamed was tortured and went through extraordinary rendition [JURIST news archive]. A Foreign Office spokesperson commented [press release]:

For strong reasons of national security, to which the Court accepted we were entitled to give the highest weight, we could not agree to disclose this information voluntarily. These and other issues relating to national security will be considered at a further hearing next week.
Mohamed's lawyers have also asked the Irish government [Irish Times report] to turn over information about CIA rendition flights [JURIST news archive] which allegedly landed in Ireland in 2002 and 2004 while transporting Mohamed.

Mohamed says he was arrested in Pakistan and turned over to US officials who later transferred him to Moroccan agents who tortured him; he was later transferred to Guantanamo Bay in 2004. In December, in a letter [DOC, text] sent by his lawyer to UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband, he asked the UK government [JURIST report] to ensure that photographic evidence of his alleged torture be preserved. For most of 2007, Binyam was one of five UK residents detained at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive]. Three of those were released [press release; JURIST report] from US custody in December. The official status of a fourth detainee remains unclear.

 

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